Clouds disappear in time for dinner at Humac.
Yesterday was rainy on Hvar, with cloudy skies most of the day. But as is the way on this island, by evening the skies were clearing, and we headed east out to Humac. I wasn’t optimistic about our chances of seeing a fine sunset and the spectacular views in all directions, but the village itself is both interesting and attractive, so it was worth a visit for friends visiting for the first time.
Of course, the main draw was Konoba Humac, whose ‘peka’ cooking (meat or octopus slow-cooked under the bell or dome) rates among the finest available.
A walk round Humac is a prerequisite to working up an appetite for a good meal. Just as Konoba Humac has grown, put together stone by stone with loving care by the Franičević family, so are the old stone cottages of Humac coming to life. Humac is the ‘dormitory village’ for Vrisnik, and was used each year at harvest time, to save travelling the considerable distance between the two on a daily basis.
Most of the houses in Humac are still owned by people from Vrisnik, and they are being renovated, largely for family use. A few are intended for rental to tourists wanting a taste of rustic life without electricity or running water. It’s definitely an ideal environment for artists, photographers and writers. The stone constructions of walls, gutters, floors and paving are durable, standing long after the wooden constructions of floors or roofing have rotted away. Even in a dilapidated state, stone dwellings have a fascinating beauty. Restored with due care, they become a delight.
Meanwhile, nature provides an endless variety of colourful and textured plants as a framework for the buildings. For all that our stone houses can last for centuries, nature always has the last word – as is very quickly demonstrated when dwellings are finally abandoned.
Under the clearing skies we walked round the village, admiring the newly restored places, and enjoying the little museum and chapel. The walk up to the panoramic viewing spot with its telescope was rewarded by a fine sunset glowing among the dark clouds, shadowed to the right by a rainstorm in the distance.
After the walk, a splendid feast of grilled vegetables, meat cooked under the bell, and of course some fine organic wine – last year’s plavac has a particularly rich flavour. The food was cooked to perfection by Jakov, served with gentle care by his wife Keti and their assistant Dino. Perfect!